From the ashes of the punk/emo band At the Drive-In rose the phoenix of The Mars Volta, the prog rock brainchild of Cedric Bixler-Zavala and Omar Rodriguez-Lopez.
In 2003, they released this, their first album and hoo boy was no one ready for it. The energy and extreme rocking still crushes to this day. It’s got bass work from Flea of the Red Hot Chili Peppers. It’s got intense drumming from Jon Theodore, who no one knew then and still don’t know despite his extreme speed and force.
If you like quick catchy numbers, it’s got a couple of those. If you like sprawling prog opuses, it’s got those, too. Make no mistake, you start this album and it’s hard to stop it. It infects like a virus and it does not relent until the final track’s climactic explosion.